The engaging exhibits provide enjoyable and informative background to Azuchi Castle.
Located just a short distance from the Azuchi Castle site, the Azuchi Castle Archaeological Museum provides the background necessary to help you understand the ruins and what they represent.
The museum covers two main themes – Ōmi in ancient times represented by the remains of a typical agricultural settlement in the Yayoi period south of the Dainaka Lake, and the burial mound on Mt. Hyōtan that marks the beginning of the tumulus period of Ōmi, and castles of Ōmi represented by the remains of Kannonji Castle, a castle from the Middle Ages and Azuchi Castle, the first castle of the modern period. The exhibitions are designed to help you understand each period and the people who lived in Ōmi in those periods.
Permanent Exhibition Room 1 presents the ancient remains in Shiga Prefecture and artefacts excavated from these sites. The exhibition on the Yayoi period presents wooden farm implements discovered at the site of the Dainaka Lake and bronze bells excavated from Mt. Oiwa, enabling you to understand the life and natural environment of the village over the course of a year. The exhibition on the Kofun period features the burial mounds on Mt. Hyōtan and Mt. Yukino representative of the early period, with grave goods and a reconstruction of a huge stone chamber. From the middle period there are actual relics such as weapons, armour, and harnesses excavated from the Shinkai burial mound. From the late period, you can see the changes in the burial method through the grave goods excavated from the Mt. Kamoinari burial mound and the Yamatsuteru Shrine burial mound, with a full-scale reconstruction of a tunnel-shaped stone chamber typical of Ōmi. The evolution of Ōmi’s rulers over time is also shown. There are reproductions of ancient wooden products, mirrors, bronze bells and so on that you can handle yourself.
Permanent Exhibition Room 2 covers four main topics, Castle Building in the Middle Ages, Warring States Ōmi, Azuchi Castle and Oda Nobunaga, and Early Modern Castles. In Castle Building in the Middle Ages, part of a medieval castle has been reconstructed at full-scale, enabling you to understand the significance of the innovations made at Azuchi Castle. Warring States Ōmi presents the medieval castles of Ōmi such as Kannonji Castle and Odani Castle, and materials related to the Rokkaku and Azai clans. In Azuchi Castle and Oda Nobunaga, there’s a model of the remains of Azuchi Castle, the results of excavations from 1989, and materials related to Oda Nobunaga who built Azuchi Castle. Early Modern Castles looks at Hikone Castle as representative of the type, and considers the structural developments made since Azuchi Castle. The video theatre shows the results of the excavation of Azuchi Castle and reconstructions of the castle. The Nobunaga Laboratory is an information retrieval system with information on Oda Nobunaga’s achievements and the excavations at Azuchi Castle.
The museum also has rooms for rotating exhibitions and special one-off exhibitions.
Visiting the castle site, the nearby Azuchi Castle Archaeological Museum, Nobunaga’s Castle Museum, and the Azuchi Castle Museum near Azuchi Station makes an enjoyable and educational day out.